Photo: Sergei Bobylev / ITAR-TASS
The tests confirming the flight characteristics of Russia’s fifth-generation PAK FA (Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation) fighter jet have been actually completed, Deputy Defense Minister Yuri Borisov said in an interview with Rossiya 24 TV Channel on Monday.
“Several planes are now primarily testing airborne avionics. The tests proving the aircraft’s flight characteristics have practically been completed,” the deputy defense minister said.
Deputy Defense Minister Borisov earlier told the media the Russian military would purchase only a squadron of PAK FA fighter jets, compensating this with a larger order for Sukhoi Su-35 (NATO reporting name: Flanker-E) fighters.
The Sukhoi PAK FA (Prospective Airborne Complex of Frontline Aviation) is a fifth-generation fighter program of the Russian Air Force. The T-50 is the name of the prototype aircraft designed by Sukhoi for the PAK FA program. The aircraft is a stealthy, single-seat, twin-engine jet fighter, and will be the first operational aircraft in Russian service to use stealth technology. It is a multipurpose fighter designed for the air superiority and attack roles. The fighter is planned to have super-cruise, stealth, super-manoeuvrability and advanced avionics to overcome the prior generation of fighter aircraft as well as ground and maritime defences.
The PAK FA is intended to be the successor to the MiG-29 and Su-27 in the Russian Air Force and serve as the basis for the Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft being co-developed by Sukhoi and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for the Indian Air Force. PAK FA fighter first flew in 2010.